If you are considering installing solar panels on your home, you are making a positive step toward not only “living green”, but over time you will certainly also notice a real savings in your electricity bills. There is also the potential benefit of receiving rebates from your local power company for energy returned to the grid, and solar panels can also result in a higher resale value for your home.
While there are positive benefits to adding solar panels to your home, be aware that it requires a significant upfront financial commitment. While many will benefit from a solar system, not all homes are well-suited for residential solar power systems. This is largely dependent on your geographic location, orientation, amount of shade, and square footage of area available for the panels. You will need the assistance of a solar panel installation professional to assess your home’s specific suitability. If you are interested in local residential solar panel installation in Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Chesapeake VA, please contact the professionals at Expert Solar Pros for an estimate. The solar installation professionals at Expert Solar Pros will tailor a custom solar system best suited for your property.
When considering solar panels, it helps to understand the different types of solar panels and how they operate. Some types may be better suited for your specific installation.
What is a Solar Panel?
A solar panel is typically a panel of sandwiched glass and other elements that gather sunlight and convert it to electricity. This conversion process is referred to as the Photovoltaic Effect. Photons from sunlight strike layers of the photovoltaic (or “PV”) panels. The panels are composed of layers of silicon, phosphorus, and boron in a wafer-like construction. Photons knock electrons from the mineral layers and are converted into DC or Direct Current electricity. This is harnessed for use by the structural power system or stored in an array of batteries onsite.
Residential Solar Systems usually fall into four main categories:
monocrystalline (single-crystal), polycrystalline (multiple crystal), PERC (passive emitter and rear cell), and thin-film (flexible) panels. Each has individual functionality and can be recommended for specific applications.
Monocrystalline panels are made from a single silicon crystal that makes them the most efficient and longest lasting of the panel types, with an efficiency rating of over 20%.
Polycrystalline panels are made of crystalline fragments poured into a typically square mold. These are more affordable, but less efficient. They are also not well-suited for a high-temperature environment. Efficiency ratings for polycrystalline panels range from 14% to 18%.
PERC panels add a layer in the back of the cell that reflects photons back into the cell and allows more wavelengths of light to be absorbed, which increases efficiency and reduces overheating. This makes them more productive in a smaller physical footprint. PERC panels are slightly more expensive, but their efficiency rate of 25% or more may provide a better return for the initial investment.
Thin Film panels are flexible and do not always require the frame and backing of other panels. These panels can be custom sized to fit non-standard roof shapes and contours. These are not as efficient, with ratings around 12% to 15%.
Solar Panels are initially capital intensive and require a substantial investment. This is an investment that will take time to produce positive results, but the investment is worth the effort. Many homeowners realize a return soon after installation through net zero power bills, or income from electricity harnessed being returned to the power grid. There are programs available that can make use of tax and other incentives available through federal, state, and local governments.
To know more about solar incentive programs in Virginia, visit – https://programs.dsireusa.org/system/program/va. Also, if you’re looking for detailed information on residential solar panel projects in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, or Chesapeake VA, contact the Expert Solar Pros professionals at (757) 988-7777.
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Looking for solar installation services in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Norfolk? Give us a call at 757-988-7777 today! Our experienced team is ready to help you with the Federal Tax Credit and guide you through our low-interest financing option.